I was asked by Kootenay Lake/School District 8 wanted to showcase the innovative approach that Teresa Olleck, a grade one teacher from South Nelson Elementary School, takes to teach her students about nature and community. It’s no coincidence that my kids are in her class – it was an absolute pleasure seeing a master teacher in action alongside my children and their classmates over the course of the school year. “The Forest Garden” video follows the 21 students and their teacher on their weekly trips to the community garden space where they learn how to steward a public space and find delight in the animals and plants of the garden. See the video here: https://vimeo.com/130352129
Watershed Productions is working with Freedom Quest Regional Youth Services. With the funds received from the Columbia Basin Trust we will produce a PhotoVoice video focused on marginalized and at-risk youth from the West Kootenay, which will be showcased at the Creating Caring Communities conference in May 2015 in Castlegar. The project will build awareness about youth and their experiences with substance use and mental health.
“I came here to share my story about the real repercussions that drug use can cause and the serious consequences it can have in oneâ€™s life,” said participant Cloe Henri. “My ultimate goal is to help others see the lifelong consequences.”
“I feel like my experiences and stories will give perspective on what goes on in our country and our province and our streets–a lot of the times it is really hard stuff,” said participant Kenneth Rougeau. “I feel I can shed some light.”
It was fun to be profiled in the Fernie Fix here. Thanks to Hannah Griffin who tracked me down and did this interview. While we didn’t actually cross paths in the wilds of Ontario, she became a staff member at YMCA Camp Pinecrest where I used to work before I moved to Nelson. Small world.
Small or large groups from various schools or organizations are welcome as workshops will be customized based on the function of the group. For instance, theatre classes can come explore identity and characterization, a social studies class can come explore the significance of stereotyping and models of community building and a media related course could explore themes of individual and group expression and perception through the use of technology.
Workshops run January 28, 29, February 4-6 and 11-13 on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays and each can run for 1 to 2 hours in length depending on the needs of the group. They will be facilitated by the artist and filmmaker who created the exhibit, Amy Bohigian. The exhibit is up at Touchstones until February 15th. Here’s the article that Will Johnston wrote for the Nelson Star.
One part art installation, one part social experiment and one part community development exercise, Wide Shot/Close Up is intended to expose and explore how individuals present their own identity to others and how this impacts the way community is built. It is meant to engage a larger audience about the questions of how people from various backgrounds and beliefs can connect in meaningful ways.
This project is funded by a major project grant from the Columbia Kootenay Cultural Alliance and the The Mir Centre for Peace is partnering with Watershed Productions on content and delivery. The Presenting Sponsor is Kootenay Co-op.
Thanks to the following people for the support: Joy Barrett, Jane Byers, Jocelyn Carver, Jim Drake, Ian Johnston, Daryl Jolly, Gregory Mackenzie, Janet McCulloch, Miriam Needoba, Rachel Schmidt, Diane Walters, Bryan Webb, Rachel Yoder.
Big gratitude for the courage and open minds of these people for showing up to participate: Allison Alder, Jen Callow, Gisele Chouinard, Jennifer Craig, April Cuffy, Rick Galbraith, Dagmar Galt, Shane Hainsworth, Margaret Hornby, Lena Horswill, Helen Kissinger, Laran Kriese, Donna Macdonald, Chris MacMillan, Lil Maio, Lily Mayall, Kendall McPherson, Lily Miller, Gary Ramsbottom, Sacha Sebestyen, Shelley Stetsko, Isaac Thiessen, Max Thiessen, Brian Zacharias.
Thursday March 5th, 2015 – 7PM at Kootenay Studio Arts, 606 Victoria St, Nelson. Admission by Donation.
Join filmmaker and educator, Amy Bohigian, to explore how art has been used to engender social change and peace in a variety of settings at the next Mir Peace Cafe called “Art for Social Change”. We will discuss a handful of exemplary arts-based community development projects within the context of how we can positively engage artists and community stakeholders around a particular issue to create social change. It’s a great fit for individuals working in the social sector looking to explore arts-based community development and for activist minded artists.
Want a memorable night on the town while you support the Nelson and District Women’s Centre? Look no further. I have the honour of MC’ing this wonderful fundraiser which includes the great local talent of Slava Doval, Lisel Forst, Krista Lynch and Oxygen Orkestar. Friday, November 28th, 7PM at the Prestige. See the Nelson Star article about Womaginarium.
Three weeks of the Summer Film Camp has just wrapped up and there are now 48 more young filmmakers who have been super-charged and sent into the community with new filmmaking skills.
We had many returning participants, including some 4, 5 and 6 year veterans of the film camp! The Senior Director’s Seat has made a tradition of screening their new films at the Civic on the last day of the program. This year, 11 proud young filmmakers screened to a friendly audience to great acclaim. Jason Asbell and Andrew Fry worked with these 14-18 year olds throughout the two-week intensive program, with Bryan Webb helping out during a few days of production.
Lily Miller, James Tucker and Noah Gaffran were the recipients of the Kootenay Emerging Filmmaker Award made possible by a grant from the Osprey Community Foundation’s Arts Legacy Fund. These three youth received a full scholarship to attend the two-week intensive film camp and each will get further mentorship as they move forward in their filmmaking careers. See the Nelson Star article here.
For the first time ever, we had a 6-7 year old program Production Crew. These little filmmakers had big heart and made three films in just 15 hours of film camp. The Junior Director’s Seat and Director’s Seat program saw 28 young filmmakers come to the 10th Street Campus where 11 films between 28 participants.
Check out our Summer Film Camp Youtube Channel where you can see all the movies from this past summer and many of the ones we’ve made since the camp was founded in 2007.
Margaret Tessman, the Editor of ARTiculate magazine, wrote this article for the Spring 2014 magazine. Margaret has been highlighting and supporting the artists around the Columbia Basin for years with her great work at the helm of this important magazine. She managed to captured the work of Watershed Productions so eloquently in this article. ARTiculate magazine, the first word on arts culture and heritage in the Columbia Basin, is a twice yearly publication that covers arts, heritage and cultural stories and events throughout the Columbia Basin.
What a great summer at film camp and what a keen group of young filmmakers we had in each of our two programs this summer. We had many returning participants, including some 4, 5 and 6 year veterans of the film camp! Even two of the instructors for the Director’s Seat program were film camp participants back in the early days.
The Senior Director’s Seat celebrated their hard work and new film by screening their final projects on the BIG screen at the Civic Theatre in downtown Nelson. The younger group made over 10 films between 22 participants and held their final screening to a packed house at the 10th Street Campus. We have launched a Youtube Channel where we are in the process of uploading the films we’ve made over the past 7 years. Keep checking for the films that have been made by the young filmmakers across the Kootenays and beyond. We hope to have a majority of the film uploaded by the end of the fall.
These days, I hear a lot of “How’s the Knowledge Documentary going?” as I get around town. Well, glad you’ve asked. The project is coming along nicely as we are now into the post-production of 11 unique historical shorts that will comprise the final half-hour documentary to air on the Knowledge Network. Ben Euerby is busy composing music for each piece as John Tucker looks to design the sound. Daryl Jolly has been hard at work in the heat of the summer piecing together photos in his editing bay and bringing them to life with the magic of After Effects. We’ve worked with over 30 regional archives and a pile of family photo albums to pull together hundreds of images, as this documentary is comprised only of archival photos and documents. Laura Fortier of Touchstones has been instrumental in helping us get many of the photos for the a handful of the stories.
One of the big pieces to report is that title has changed. Whereas, it was originally called “If These Mountains Could Talk”, it was becoming clear that the strongest stories that emerged for the series all centred around people and their experience of living and moving to the Kootenays. The mountains and landscape certainly play a role in the stories, but as Murray Battle, Director of Independent Production at the Knowledge Network, pointed out, “Amy, the mountains aren’t the ones talking anymore.” So, we reluctantly let go of the original title and looked for one to more directly frame the stories. This lead to the name “Dreamers and Dissidents: A History of Nelson and the Kootenays.” From a fierce Sinixt Chief to an emigre princess from Russia to the Draft dodgers and Doukhobors, the stories lead us to what shaped the character of the place we call Nelson and the Kootenays today.
The Knowledge Network has tentatively planned a World Premiere at our very own Civic Theatre in the spring of 2015. We hope to wrap the production this Winter after we get our last pieces in place. History takes a long time to create and we are learning that historical documentaries take even longer! We’re looking forward to sharing it wide and far, but locally most of all.